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  1. The Earthquake Game is one of those things I can’t even enjoy in retrospect because of how many people get the details wrong about the game. If you are truly interested in understanding the facts of the phenomenon and subsequent belated ESPN media frenzy, I’d be happy to share my experience. I was an LSU student from the Fall of ’86 to Spring of ’90 and attended almost every home football game. I was cheering in the student section for The Earthquake Game. 1) Why the TD registered on the seismograph (& why none has registered since) Tiger Stadium underwent a series of renovations involving the seating in the 80s & 90s. In ’88, some metal bleacher seating was installed in part of the concrete stadium. The long strips of metal seating were attached on brackets & sat about 3 to 4 inches ABOVE the concrete seating. They had some give to them and were definitely more comfortable for sitting. During The Earthquake Game, the students tried drumming up enthusiasm by stomping their feet on the new seating – which reverberated really nicely and LOUD. Toward the end of the game, during that last TD drive, everyone was standing – not on the concrete but up on top of the bracketed seating. After a good play, people would stomp the seats & everyone would sway and bounce up & down. You could feel the vibrations in your bones. When Hodson completed that TD pass, everyone started jumping up & down and even as happy as I was I still remember getting the fear of God put in me because the bracketed seats (that we were still standing on top of) were bowing & bouncing like crazy. I nearly fell & had images of a cracked skull racing through my mind. Many actually did fall and some of the seats collapsed under the weight of the mad jumping. After that game, there was so much broken/destroyed seating that LSU couldn’t repair all of it before the next game. They had to remove the brackets and just bolt the metal seating right down onto the concrete. It was much more uncomfortable, but infinitely safer. It makes me crazy when ESPN reports that it was the crowd noise that caused the blip on the seismograph. Anyone who was there that night & sat in the North end zone can tell you about those bleacher seats & the vibrations from all the jumping & stomping. Besides, I’ve been to many games since then that I considered MUCH MUCH louder and they didn’t register. Since LSU does not use that type of seating any more (that game ended it), I don’t see the blip ever being repeated. 2) When & where it was reported I remember it very clearly because I was applying to work at the Reveille (LSU student newspaper) and read it every single day. The Tuesday after the game (the Reveille didn’t print on Mondays so that students did not have to work late on Sunday night) I was walking down Victory Hill to my car after class & opened the paper to read about the game. There, plain as day, was a photo of the seismograph & an explanation that the blip coincided with the TD. My friends and I laughed about that & knew it was those wobbly seats & our crazed jumping that caused it. I kept that paper for awhile but over the years it has disappeared. You are right that after the first week or so, the seismograph was generally forgotten about. It WAS posted up on the bulletin board in the lobby of the Geology building. I had a class there and I remember looking at it & thinking that they shouldn’t just hang it out like that on a bulletin board – it was the only copy, what if someone took it? But no one did & eventually it was moved to a glass case months later. A couple years after that, ESPN picked up on the story & blew it up to legendary status. They also perpetuated the complete falsehood that it was the roar of the crowd that caused the blip. It aggravated me to no end! I couldn’t believe someone didn’t correct them & tell them what really happened inside the stadium. But no one ever did. So there’s my story. I think it makes a hell of a lot more sense than what ESPN fabricated, don’t you? Anyway, sorry bout the game, but you have to admit it was a pretty exciting finish. I look forward to meeting y’all again & continuing what has become a most ferocious rivalry. ;-D

  2. My favorite memory of the game — and only redeeming quality of it — was the shoot of a friend from Auburn standing in disbelief as a crowd of LSU fans above him. In true rude form, he sees that he is being filmed them points at his crotch — catching the entire nation on a MEAT GAZE.

  3. That was the first time I remember crying after an Auburn game. It is still probably the most devistating loss in AU history (36-0 didn’t cost us anything but pride, sorry BAMA…this one cost us a National Championship), at least in my lifetime. First time my Dad coined the phrase about AU Football: THEY’LL BREAK YOUR DAMN HEART. (A phrase he has not said since the 2009 season)

  4. Actually the seismogram is kept in Hill Memorial Library along with many other LSU treasures.

    You guys can relax. I retired last month and I’m the last guy who knew the story.

  5. I too was a student in the North End Zone student section for this game. I totally agree wit LSUfan247’s remarks on the game. The bleachers we were on did give way as we jumped and hollered. My husband lived in an apartment in the stadium at the time and says that things in his dorm room were knocked off the shelves and pictures fell off the cinder block walls. The whole place just SHOOK. The Reveille did run the story that week. My father was a geologist for Texeco and I remember bring it home and discussing it.
    The story may not have caught fire for a few years but the student body sure knew about it.
    May not be the greatest play in LSU history, but it is certainly a game I remember 25 years later.

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